Pastured Poultry Talk

Hosted by Mike Badger, Pastured Poultry Talk aims to inspire pastured poultry producers to build better businesses, solve problems, and integrate new ideas.
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Pastured Poultry Talk



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Now displaying: July, 2015
Jul 31, 2015

In part 2 of Mike's interview with Jim Adkins of the Sustainable Poultry Network, we talk about:

  • The need to always selectively breed
  • A spiral mating system using two groups of breeders
  • Linebreeding is the best way to produce good poultry, but there are some things to avoid
  • Farming with modern commercial (hybrid) birds alongside standard-bred birds
  • "We're blazing a new trail the old way, and it's gonna take some time," says Jim
  • Marketing the standard-bred and heritage birds


Why everyone should consider eating standard-bred slow growing poultry

SPN breeder network. Pastured Poultry Talk cohost Grady Phelan has a certified flock of Delaware chickens (#77)

SPN national conferences

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Jul 24, 2015

Mike interviews Jim Adkins of the Sustainable Poultry Network (SPN). According to Jim, SPN is not a backyard chicken club; it's aggressive at getting the old heritage and standard bred poultry back into the martketplace.

We talk about:

  • Everything revolves around training, coaching, and mentoring
  • "Don't get hung up on the word heritage"
  • Standard bred is poultry that has a written standard that you breed to
  • The chicken industry is bigger than America
  • Certification means committing to authenticity, common core values, and breed improvement
  • Finding stock from a reliable source; Something more than a bag of bones
  • 5 foundational pillars of Sustainable Poultry production model
    • Can you do it all? - Do you have to do it all?
  • Good breeders often don't make good marketers

SPN–USA is all about creating local and regional food movements, specifically with standard-bred heritage poultry for meat and eggs. Check 'em out and let Jim know you found him through Pastured Poultry Talk.

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Jul 17, 2015

Mike received a question from someone asking how someone could afford Grady's "Immaculate Chicken Houses." We spend most of the episode justifying the investment in infrastructre. How many chickens do you think you need to payback the investment in a Mobile Range Coop? Listen to find out.

In our tip of the week, Mike shares some wisdom about chicken crates.

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Jul 10, 2015

Grady starts a poultry tip of the day (maybe that should that be week), and for his first tip, he talks about selecting and using brooder bedding.

Mike and Grady respond to a question submitted by producer Seth Stallings. Seth raises broilers in Oklahoma where state regulations prohibit the sale of more than 1,000 exempt processed broilers annually. He's three hours (one way) away from USDA processing and needs to transport feed. There in lies the risk. The reward is an untapped market.

Seth's perfectly detailed analysis demonstrates the business of pastured poultry and encapsulates the decision making process of successful farms. We break Seth's question down and offer our insights.

Don't forget to leave us a review on iTunes. Email your questions and comments to

Jul 3, 2015

Mike speaks with Arkansas producer Terrell Spencer, aka Spence, about farming, military, and life.

Everyone has a story and in this episode, Spence shares his story as a veteran turned farmer. He credits his farming path to an Iraqi farmer he observed while on patrol. As he transitioned to life on the farm, he found his therapy in an ax and a chainsaw. He found faith and support in his community.

Now a big part of the Spence's story is his eagerness to mentor other vets through the Farmer Veteran Coalition.

He started his current poultry business with 30 hens. Now the farm employs Spence and another full-time employee while focusing on poultry. They start between 800-1000 broilers every two weeks from mid-April through December and manage 200 layers. 

Spence is a fixture in the pastured poultry community, offering advice to APPPA members and veterans in addition to consulting services. He is the current Vice President of APPPA.

We end the conversation with a simple question, "how has your pastured poultry business changed?" Feed, chicks, and experience are given. But it's the people Spence relies on.

"A farm will do everything in it's power to become the most important thing in your life." -- Spence.